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IBM Delivers Wireless Portal Server

IBM Thursday shipped its WebSphere Portal Server, which it said enables enterprises to build portals that provide employee and customer access to corporate information using wireless Net devices.

The company said the product provides a scalable framework for applications and information from a variety of sources. It includes navigation, personalization and support for a wide variety of Net devices.

"WebSphere Portal Server is the core of IBM's portal strategy," said Larry Bowden, IBM Software Group's vice president. "It integrates the front-end, back-end services, application server, and tooling needed by customers to solve the breadth of their B2C, B2B and B2E needs."

The Web server is built around what the company calls portlets, which are windows into specific content or applications, according to IBM. It has portlets for specific wireless phones, handhelds and other devices.

The company said WebSphere Portal Server is designed to be used in conjunction with its WebSphere Everyplace Suite, which provides tools for converting Web content to content that can be used in wireless phones and handhelds. Currently, the suite supports Wireless Application Protocol (WAP), but the company announced Thursday that i-mode support will be added in April.

According to the company, WebSphere Portal Server is available now on AIX and will support Windows NT and Solaris in April. Pricing is based on the number of users.